Coons Dismisses Biden's Criticism of Court Packing: 'Joe Does Have a Way With Words'

October 12, 2020

Delaware senator Chris Coons (D.) dismissed Joe Biden's past criticism of expanding the size of the Supreme Court on Monday.

"Joe does have a way with words, doesn't he?" Coons told Fox News anchor Dana Perino. In 1983, Biden called expanding the court a "bonehead idea."

Coons, a longtime Biden ally, pivoted from Biden's criticism to advocating for the postponement of Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination hearing until after the election.

Coons said Sunday that confirming Barrett to the Supreme Court seat left vacant by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg's death "constitutes court packing."

Some Democrats have called for expanding the Supreme Court as retaliation for Barrett's confirmation. Despite his past opposition, Biden has refused to say in recent weeks whether he would support the idea as president.

Along with his 1983 criticism, Biden said he opposed the practice last year during the Democratic primary.

"I would not get into court packing. We add three justices, the next time around, we lose control, they add three justices," he said. "We begin to lose any credibility the court has at all."

Biden said Friday that voters do not "deserve" to know his stance before the election. He called it a "distraction" during the first presidential debate with President Donald Trump, and he said voters would find out his stance when the election is over.

Biden's running mate Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) also refused to say whether she supported court packing during last week's vice presidential debate. Harris said she was open to it during her failed presidential run last year.